Recycling paint through regular drop-off programs for household hazardous waste is expensive, but residents wanting to discard paint have a lower-cost option.

Drop-offs at paint stores participating in the PaintCare program are so efficient the cost has even declined during this time of high inflation.

To the consumer, it may seem both programs are free. However, both really do have a cost.

Public agencies fund most general household hazardous waste collection by charging a fee to garbage collection companies, with those expenses passed on through rates charged to customers. The fee is necessary because contractors operating collection events usually charge more than $70 per vehicle load brought to them, regardless of contents.